I’ve just started a Shakespeare class, and I have to be honest, I’ve never been a huge fan. I’ve always had trouble with the roundabout language and all of those references to Ancient Greek mythology. But so far, my class has been far more interesting than anticipated. We’ve just finished up with Titus Andronicus, long considered to be one of Shakespeare’s goriest texts. From what I could tell, this is a valid claim. If anything, it seemed like Shakespeare’s version of a slasher film. But the play isn’t all just violence. In Titus Andronicus, Shakespeare actually uses references to Greek mythology as central to the plot of the play, as opposed to being merely an extended metaphor. He uses the legend of Philomele to give voice to an otherwise voiceless character, thus commenting on the necessity of literature and myth as a means of communication. Despite the graphic violence of the narrative, I found it to be a rather inspirational tale for writers.